Copying From Other Communities

A while back, WordPress buried a small joke deep within their terms of service.

 

If you clicked the link, you would (bizarrely) see a plate of BBQ food.

A simple search shows hundreds, maybe thousands, of communities have copied these terms of service (including, to some extent, our own). These often include not just the ‘easter egg’, but the wrong jurisdiction too.

Some have copied from another source (which changed the link to an article in the New Yorker). Others copied the text (not the HTML), and have no link at all (communities on Discourse seem especially affected).

Copying terms of service, documentation, and design elements is always going to happen. It’s often how good ideas spread. It’s easier to edit and work with an existing template than developing something new from scratch.

However…you should comb through every single word of what you’re copying to ensure it matches your needs and no-one has slipped some nefarious content in there (i.e. what if the policy said your website will pay every visitor $20?).

p.s. It might be worth checking your terms of service today.

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